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The 'Main Street' of Manhattan, New York in 1911

Originally a high-class residential street, Fifth Avenue first began to commercialize in 1893 when the Astoria Hotel opened.

In 1906, the B. Altman and Company department store opened on 34th and Fifth, and the street started to transition to a hub of commerce.

These panoramic photos, taken in 1911 for a survey of Fifth Avenue, capture the thoroughfare in its first years as a commercial hub.

Along with private homes and small businesses, the photographs capture landmarks such as the Flatiron building, the New York Public Library and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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WELLS & CO./NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

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WELLS & CO./NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

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WELLS & CO./NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

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WELLS & CO./NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

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WELLS & CO./NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

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WELLS & CO./NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

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